2008 Pontiac G6 airbags didn’t deploy in accident

I previously owned a 2008 Pontiac g6 which was totalled on 1/16/18 . I would like to know why neither air bag deployed at a 50 mph impact which caused injury. And who is to be held liable

We would need more details on the accident.

I was traveling rt 10 when another vehicle ran me off the road. Iwent
through a ditch hit some small trees then down another embankment whereas
the car hit another ditch solid and came to a sudden stop and i was thrown
into the windshield. The car was totalled on impact.

Some info here, https://www.shevlinsmith.com/blog/2017/november/do-i-have-a-case-if-my-air-bags-didn-t-deploy-in/
Were you wearing a seat belt?

Not a lawyer but yeah the seat belt keeps you from hitting the windshield normally. The Sheriff says they see a lot of broken thumbs from air bags from people with old school grips on the wheel so maybe you’re lucky. At any rate on a ten year old car, I’d be asking when the last time it was at the dealer for an air bag inspection, if I were on the defense team.

Sounds like the driver of the vehicle that ran you off the road is liable.
If he/she admitted to causing the accident you already have your answer to question #2, if they did not it may be up to the court.
As far as question #1, who knows, could have been the angle of the impact, previously damaged sensors, etc.

Odd hitting windshield. I was traveling at 55 MPH, hit broadside, car went off the road, briefly airborne, nosed into a ditch, my wife and I suffered nothing more than a few bruises from the seat belts.

OK, I have never heard of taking a car in for an airbag inspection, in fact my 03 trailblazer has Takata airbags not under recall.

Read the 1st item in FAQ’s

The algorithim in the cars air bag system determines if the bag should inflate or not. If you had moderate injuries and could walk away the air bags did not need to deploy. They can hurt you more than you think. The plus side is the air bag may save your life, the down side is thay may break your nose, jaw, ribs etc. You are alive but sore. That is a trade off I will take any day.

On the 2005-2010 Pontiac G6 there’s been some problems reported with an associated connector apparently, having to do w/ the electrical connection to the SIR module. If you had that problem however it most likely would have been turning the air bag dashboard warning light on, at least intermittently. Did that dash light ever come one or blink/slash in the months prior to the accident? Normally there would be body module diagnostic codes stored too if that connector wasn’t working properly.

This is the TSB number, you may be able to find it by Googling, or a dealership should be able to provide a copy. 08-09-41-002G

I curious as to how they know that 44,869 lives were saved. Are they assuming that every air bag deployment equals a saved life that would not have survived without the airbag?

You probably dissipated enough energy by going through the first ditch and taking down small
trees that the air bags didn’t need to deploy. That you survived hitting the windshield is sort of proof of that. Especially if you were unbelted, which I notice you have not commented on.


Albert, ordinarily the front air bag sensor(s) would have to be impacted by the collision with Mother Earth and/or some of her features in this case. I’ve seen some pretty horrific vehicle damage that didn’t get the sensor(s) involved. Impact damage below or above the front support that retains the sensor(s) will sometimes cause the air bags to not deploy, as designed and functioning properly.

I’d be more concerned as to why the seat belt / shoulder harness failed to keep you in your seat, as they need to be worn at all times while driving in order for properly functioning SRS protection. This admonition is found in the vehicle’s Driver Manual.

Besides, it doesn’t take all that much damage for an insurance company to “total” a 9 or 10 year-old vehicle, as depreciation has taken a toll on the overall value, especially when the damage, albeit apparently minor looking, is spread out in multiple locations on the vehicle. It adds up quickly.

Please post some photos of the damaged G6 so that we can see what happened and make some more informed guesses.



As some other forum members have pondered, I also have to wonder how a driver who is properly belted-into his vehicle could wind up hitting the windshield.


I think the OP said the car went down an embankment prior to striking something at the bottom. Perhaps they were already tilted forward toward the windshield at that point by the pitch of the embankment, so there wasn’t much distance between them and the windshield prior to the actual impacts.

The only time I’ve had any excitement in a car, that shoulder harness locks up tight and stays that way until the car returns to normal.

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Speaking of “excitement” and discussing this incident with an 06 Pontiac reminded me that GM’s Pontiac division claimed that “We Build Excitement.”

However, the kind of excitement they had in mind for Pontiac drivers didn’t include taking out trees and bulldozing dirt, I’m relatively certain! :grinning:

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@bing makes a very good point. In a severe a accident the seat belt permanently locks in position. We responded to a dui accident & the driver swore he had his seat belt on (to avoid getting a ticket for that also) but the seat belt was locked in the fully retracted position. If he was wearing it it would have locked the way he was wearing it and would not retract. In a less severe but exciting moment the belt will temporarily lock to prevent the occupant from going too far forward. Smacking the windshield does suggest they were not wearing their seat belt. Now I also thought I could figure out how accidents occur and the more of them I see the less I can figure out what happened. I see stuff that does not make sense to me, but an accident reconstruction expert will look at it for a while and figure it out. So without knowing more about what happened with @AlbertButler, pictures etc hard to make a firm conclusion.

Actually not that difficult. Insurance companies have extensive crash data on MILLIONS of accidents world-wide. They compare the severity of the accident where someone survived an accident to an accident with the same severity and didn’t have air-bags and more then one person died. They consider many different variables to make fairly accurate predictions.

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The Catalina’s I have owned had room for a lot of excitement-bring back drivein movies !


That definitely would build excitement, but it would be wise to check with one’s doctor first to see if it’s too much excitement, particularly for Baby Boomers.

P.S. Actually, there still are a few Drive-Ins left and I’m pretty sure a Catalina or two are still around if you’d like to give it a go.
CSA :sunglasses:

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